Henry Shorr

Henry Shorr (born 1896- died Dec. 3, 1934) was a Detroit organized crime figure and member of the Purple Gang.

Biography Edit

One of the more prominent members of Detroit's Purple Gang, he was employed as a teenager at a vegetable stand in Eastern Market. Eventually he gravitated to the criminal elements around Oakland Avenue, working in a corn sugar warehouse (which would become a major supplier of corn sugar to liquor distillers in Detroit during Prohibition) along with his good friend Charles Leiter. Many members of the Purple Gang learned their criminal trade working in the "Oakland Sugar House Gang." Shorr was very successful until his fortunes began to decline with the rest of the Purple Gang in the early 1930s. After the repeal of Prohibition, he quarreled with his partners and went off on his own, attempting to produce whiskey illegally, since he had been denied a liquor license by Michigan state officials. His old Purple Gang associates abducted him on the evening of December 3, 1934, and he was never seen again. It was eventually rumored that his body had been incinerated in an industrial furnace. A few years later, his widow Mary visited Purple Gang member Harry Fleisher on Alcatraz. She wanted him to help prove Harry was dead so she could receive his life insurance money. Fleisher predictably refused to help her.

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